[messaging] Modern anti-spam and E2E crypto

zaki at manian.org zaki at manian.org
Fri Sep 5 16:58:43 PDT 2014

Gmail Spam Filtering seems to perform reasonably with the heterogeneous mix
of PGP and clear text email that I currently receive. I have noticed that
encrypted emails from new contacts occasionally take additional time to be
delivered. But I've got insufficient observations to disambiguate this from
the normal stochastic variation of gmail delivery times. Do we imagine that
the existing system only begins to fails once e2e traffic approaches some
critical threshold?

If this is a case, what we need is a system for gradually adding new
cryptographic reputation signals as we approach that threshold.

One thing I like the about the cryptocurrency transaction idea is that it
adds a server readable cryptographic reputation signal to the message. The
emails would be constructed as message which is signed by sender key then
encrypted to recipient public key then signed by emails service's
cryptocurrency key. The third signature and a corresponding cryptocurrency
ledger transaction to enhanced deliverability in fully optional manner.

On Fri, Sep 5, 2014 at 10:04 AM, Tim Bray <tbray at textuality.com> wrote:

> Tremendous piece, Mike; Thanks! Two questions:
> On Fri, Sep 5, 2014 at 8:07 AM, Mike Hearn <mike at plan99.net> wrote:
>> So I think we need totally new approaches. The first idea people have is
>> to make sending email cost money, but that sucks for several reasons; most
>> obviously - free global communication is IMHO one of humanities greatest
>> achievements, right up there with putting a man on the moon. Someone from
>> rural China can send me a message within seconds, for free, and I can
>> reply, for free! Think about that for a second.
> ​1. Is there a price point for an electronic “stamp” which is close enough
> to free to be acceptable even to someone in rural China (I dunno, say
> 0.001USD​) but unaffordable for spammers?
> 2. Could cryptocurrency tech provide a mechanism for creating/vending such
> stamps?
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